AW in the snow

  • 1 Replies
AW in the snow
« on: September 24, 2013, 04:46:35 PM »
Hello everyone! I'm gearing up to MC my first AW campaign, and I am really psyched. A thing struck me, though.

It's funny how certain rules can strongly imply a particular setting. Nowhere in the AW core book is the particulars of the setting spelled out, but it's still pretty clear that Vincent has had in mind the classical scenery of post-apocalyptic staples like Mad Max or Fallout, the American West or the Australian outback: desert, scorching sun and rock. Now, call me provincial, but being from a northern country, my visual imagination is better served by scenes of deep forests, roaring rivers and snow-clad mountains.

One way this setting-specificity becomes apparent are in the Driver and Chopper playbooks. They're fine in a desert, I guess, but more problematic in a setting where there's trees everywhere, and where all the roads can be counted on to be snow-covered for half of the year.

So I figured I'd ask whether anyone else has been thinking about this little difficulty, and what kind of mechanical solutions they've considered. I've been thinking in terms of snowmobiles, but their problem would be the mirror image of the car's: they only work in the winter. Do you experienced players think that anything would suffer from giving the Driver and Chopper two sets of vehicles, one for each season?

I may be overthinking this, but having never played the game, it's hard to know. :)
« Last Edit: September 24, 2013, 05:31:12 PM by SchwererTropfen »

Re: AW in the snow
« Reply #1 on: September 24, 2013, 05:09:44 PM »

It's definitely the case that regardless of default settings, one general assumption of the genre seems to be that the landscape is static -- I would go so far as to suggest that there are usually no seasons in the apocalypse. Or if there are, they do not provide variety so much as exacerbation. I.e. winter is even colder, or summer brings hurricanes rather than constant downpour.

When my group played in a 'cold' apocalypse it was just always cold -- sure the cold would get worse, and snowstorms would occur, etc. -- but snowmobiles were basically almost always usable, because there was always at least some snow on the ground. That said, if you want to buck this implicit trend and have fully-developped seasons in your game, I see no reason why the Driver and Chopper wouldn't have access to either different vehicles or vehicles that were specifically adapted to this reality.

Either way I wouldn't worry about it -- you're going to start your game in one specific season, and probably stay there for many, many sessions. I would just start there, and if you get to the point where the snow is melting, just ask your players: "so what do you do with your snowmobiles once the snow melts?" By that point the answer will probably be clear to everyone, as the world will have many sessions of development behind it.